"My paintings are about other earthlings that we share this planet with... and about our relationship with them. I care very much about the environment and about endangered species. I feel an emotional connection to animals and I believe we have no more right to this planet than they do. There are all kinds of ways to communicate. For me, one of the most effective ways is through a sense of humor.” – Tom Palmore
Born in Oklahoma in 1945, Palmore’s education and art training occurred at several institutions, concluding with the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia in 1969. For more than 35 years, Tom Palmore has painted animal portraits with thoughtfulness and compassion for his subject and a masterful technical prowess. His photo-realist portraits of animals offer a unique and often comical juxtaposition of technical literalism and surreal narrative.
Palmore paints large-scale, bold animal portraits with reverence and tenderness. Art viewers feel that his subjects are almost available to touch. The only aspect which breaks the trompe l'oeil illusion is the backdrop of the uncanny scene - such as a portrait of a cat set against bird wallpaper, or a frog poised in front of butterfly wallpaper.
Palmore takes up where the European masters left off – instead of commissioned works of royal dignitaries, he personifies the cat, the rooster, the coyote or the snow owl as high-born, with an air of shameless pride of their being here too with all the sense of wonder, identity, and dreams of a human. “Even when I put an animal in a natural setting, I try to make it my own through unusual lighting, unique compositions, or an atypical point of view,” he has said. Each unique painting is an ode to a real animal and Palmore’s imaginative honoring of their life - suggestive of a full partnership on earth with humans.
His work appears in numerous corporate collections and in such prominent public collections as the Smithsonian Institution, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Brooklyn Museum, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Denver Museum of Art, the New Orleans Museum of Art, the National Museum of Wildlife Art, the Saint Louis Museum of Art and the Indianapolis Museum of Art and many other institutions across the United States, additionally collected by AT&T Price Waterhouse and Stanley Marcs of Neiman Marcus.